Wich Mac Mini Mid 2011 is best for 1080p playback ?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Dusky600, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Dusky600 macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #1
    hey, i've been trying to read reviews about this. im wondering if the i7 quad 2.0GHz with intel 3000 graphics from the server is better for HDTV 1080p playback than the dual core i7 with the Radeon.

    anyone got any thoughts on this ?
     
  2. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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  3. fa8362 macrumors 65816

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    #3
    I agree with dukebound. They're all fine. Beware of posters with software problems who erroneously blame the Mini hardware for video issues.
     
  4. krburrell macrumors regular

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  5. OTACORB macrumors 6502a

    OTACORB

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    #5
    Having used both the one with the AMD GPU and one with the Intel Integrated, I can tell you they both work great for 1080P.
     
  6. Dusky600 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #6
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_1 like Mac OS X; pt-pt) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8G4 Safari/6533.18.5)

    So which would be faster ? I'm assuming the quad core, you just lose graphic heavy capability ? I'm trying to decide between them both and I'm not a heavy gamer at all.
     
  7. djrbx macrumors member

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    #7
    If you are just going to be using the mini for video playback, all the new minis would do perfectly fine. I say go with the base model as you do not need the dedicated graphics for video playback anyway. The Intel HD3000 is actually overkill when it comes to video playback.

    As long as you are not going to be using the mini for gaming, save yourself the money and go with the base model mini and just use the money you saved to upgrade the RAM to 8GB.

    As far as speed goes, you will again not notice the difference between any of the models unless you are either doing heavy encoding in which case the quad core mini would be slightly better vs gaming which the dedicated graphics would suite your needs better. Again, unless you are going to be doing one or the other, the base is all you need.

    Source: I use the base model as my HTPC connected to a network 8TB NAS on my LAN which hosts/streams all my 1080p blu-ray encoded rips.
     
  8. dolphin842 macrumors 65816

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    #8
    The quad-core is much faster at *encoding* videos, but as others have said here, if you're just looking to play videos, any model works great.
     
  9. OTACORB macrumors 6502a

    OTACORB

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    #9
    Absolutely! I've done some side by side comparison! Quad-Core all the way!

    AMD GPU won't mean much unless you play 3D Games or need it for intensive graphics/video stuff.
     
  10. nurbz macrumors newbie

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    #10
    Well, if ever Apple decides to enable Intel's Quicksync on these SB processors, then quad-core is no better than dual, and quicksync wins in every case.

    And it is true today you use windows.
     
  11. OTACORB macrumors 6502a

    OTACORB

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    #11
    Don't hold your breath on that, we are talking about Apple here. I don't do what if's when it comes to Apple, so for now the quad-core is the best option, but again that is a individual decision based on ones needs.
     
  12. Dusky600 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #12
    thank you guys, based on your discussion i think i shall be happy with the entry level 2.3GHz i5 with intel graphics then. think it would be over kill to either get the Radeon or the Quad, i want to use the mac mini mainly has a media center/workstation for text and presentations.
    im guessing that would be enough . :)
     
  13. OTACORB macrumors 6502a

    OTACORB

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    #13
    I think given what you plan to do, you will be very happy with the base model. These are some sweet little machines!

    I decided on the quad-core because I will likely keep this machine for a while and I wanted to as much as I could get ahead of the curve. Long as this baby holds up, I'll be good to go for awhile.
     
  14. Dusky600 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #14
    well i worry about that as well and mostly i want a fast machine, im going to stick a ssd in there has well... ill be debatimg this until i actually buy it . the benchmarks are very far apart.. decisions decisions..
     
  15. OTACORB macrumors 6502a

    OTACORB

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    #15
    Let me just share this with you. I originally purchased the 2.5 core i5 and I ripped the movie Priest 2011. Using my Sony external DVD drive. It took 1 hour and 12 minutes.

    Today on my 2.0 quad-core i7 ripping this same movie with the same external Sony DVD drive. You ready? It took 26 minutes, I couldn't believe it myself. Handbreak loves this quad-core processor. hehehe

    So for me I absolutely know I made the right choice as I do rip a lot of DVD's.
     
  16. Dusky600 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #16
    what about overall speed ? opening and running apps etc ? did you notice a big sifference ?

    does it feel instant ? any lag at all in either one ?
     
  17. OTACORB macrumors 6502a

    OTACORB

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    #17
    Everything snaps right open. In regards to doing most everyday stuff like email, web surfing etc the difference isn't nearly as noticeable. Though I will say that there are a few apps that do seem to open quicker, mainly MS office and Adobe Acrobat. Those have always been a bit slow to open.

    If you don't do a lot of CPU intensive stuff you probably can save yourself some bucks with the base model. If you plan to keep it a few years, though I'd give some consideration to the quad. LOL
     
  18. Dusky600 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #18
    thanks for all your input, i shall do some soul searching to determine if i should spend more money than i really have to i work a lot with pdf crearion and editing and office apps... guess id want them to be has smooth has possible.
     
  19. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    #19
    I am not sure what you mean by "as smooth as possible", but rest assured that the graphics card has nothing to do with any of those activities and you'll not see a difference between the AMD or Intel graphics. The dual vs quad CPU will also have practically the same performance for tasks like that.

    What will make a huge difference with those workflows is a SSD drive.
     
  20. djrbx macrumors member

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    #20
    Again in all honesty you do not need the quad. You are only going to be using for video playback and the occasional office apps so you do not need the performance boost as you would hardly notice it to begin with. By the time you outgrow the machine, you'll probably be looking to replace the machine by then anyway. Just slap 8GB of RAM in the machine and call it a day. I don't even think you need to get SSD unless you want it just for the fun. Save the money and go by yourself something nice instead or wait until the price of SSD comes down and get one then.
     
  21. Dusky600 thread starter macrumors regular

    Dusky600

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    #21
    i've settled on the base 2.3GHz model, ill stick a 240 ssd and a 1tb scorpio blue in it for media storage along with 8 gb ram and call it a day :D

    thanks all for helping me make up my mind.
     
  22. SR45 macrumors 65832

    SR45

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    #22
    Just a simple question for those in the know.

    Purchasing the entry level Mini with 8 Gb of ram, would this also work with a Dell 30 inch (3007) monitor doing normal Internet, email, word program and some YouTub video's as well ? Or should I go for the i5 2.5 Ghz with the 7,200 rpm HDD and 8 GB ?

    Thank you
     
  23. fa8362 macrumors 65816

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    #23
    A five year old Mini can do that, so unless there's a software conflict with Lion, there's no issue with any of that.
     
  24. SR45 macrumors 65832

    SR45

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    #24
    That's good to know fa8362 and thank you for the update ;)
     
  25. bbcmilk macrumors newbie

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    Aug 20, 2011
    #25
    Older model

    Hey guys, im also thinking about purchasing a macmini only for Media Centers. I do know that any of the new mac minis are good enough for this purpose, but what about older models?

    They´re still selling older models here quite cheaper than the new ones. Is this model good enough for 1080p video playback?

    MC270BZA
    Intel® CoreTM 2 Duo 2.4Ghz / 2GB / HD 320GB / DVD-RW / Bluetooth / HDMI / NVIDIA GeForce 320M 256MB
     

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